The state government should ensure that the policemen who arrested two women from Palghar for a Facebook post critical of the city’s shutdown after Bal Thackeray’s demise be punished as their families are too afraid to demand any action, said the girls’ lawyer.
“Only closing the case is not enough. Family members of the two girls are obviously scared, as they have to stay in the same locality. They have been traumatised by the incident and want to ensure that the case registered against the girls is dropped” said lawyer Sudhir Gupta. Even the inquiry report ordered by the state recommends departmental and administrative action against the Thane police.
The girls’ parents had said on Friday that their priority was to get charges against the girls dropped.
“The responsibility of establishing an offence lies with the state (police). And especially in this case, when the girl’s parents appear scared, the state should ensure that there is stringent action against the policemen involved in the arrests. I am not very sure if the parents would be too keen to pursue the matter against the policemen, once the charges against the girls are dropped.”
Gupta said that the report filed in court should clearly state that the case was false and there was malicious intent behind arresting the girls. Normally, when filing a closure report (an application before the court to shut a police case), in addition to other options the prosecution can file a B Summary report — the case is false and filed with malicious purpose — or a C Summary report — complaint was false but filed because of a misunderstanding and without malicious intention.
In case of a B Summary report, action can be taken against the police. “I am afraid though that a C Summary report will be filed,” said Gupta.
He is also demanding that the case of vandalism at the Shaheen Dhada’s uncle’s hospital be investigated by another agency and not the local police.
When asked if any action was taken on the report submitted by inspector general (Konkan range) Sukhwinder Singh, director general of police Sanjeev Dayal said, “Whenever action is taken, we will inform you about it.”
A note to offenders from the offended
If you use social media, be wary. We want to let you know that your actions have consequences.
If you post something online and that something is deemed by us to be critical offensive to what we do, what we believe in and who we hold in high esteem, then we can throw you in jail. The law allows us to do this. Do yourself a favor and read the Indian IT Act, especially provision 66A. We did it recently with two girls for Facebook posts. Earlier, we did it when a man tweeted against the finance minister’s son. We didn’t beat him up, we just had him arrested. We’ve sued bloggers for questioning management ‘gurus’, journalists and politicians in the past. We’ve thrown pilots in jail because they posted something against us.
If the law ‘punishes’ us, we get out on bail just like you. Those two girls paid Rs. 15,000 each for bail. When some of us were arrested for destroying property and injuring people in the same case, we got a discount on bail. It was a package deal you see. 50% off! We only paid Rs7,500 bucks a person.
Please don’t think this is a violation of your constitutionally guaranteed and protected right to freedom of speech and expression. This isn’t about your rights. It’s about ours! The Offended. We have powerful weapons in our arsenal like the Police and the IT Act. If all else fails we also have the right to violence and intimidation. The Internet does not give you power, it gives you space. Section 66A works beautifully to punish you. And just to make extra sure that the message gets across, we’ll even find out where you live, where you work and what your relatives do. We’ll break and destroy. It’s your fault, you offended us. You deserve it.
You can call us bullies but we are just humble citizens exercising our right to not be offended by your right to freedom speech and expression or whatever.
So the next time you want to use the Internet, do your Google searches, YouTube, download ringtones, maybe even pirated films. Who cares? But don’t say anything that is offensive to us. Happy Surfing!